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Julia M. Marcantonio, Jean-Marie Rakic, Gijs F. J. M. Vrensen, George Duncan; Lens Cell Populations Studied in Human Donor Capsular Bags with Implanted Intraocular Lenses. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2000;41(5):1130-1141.
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purpose. Posterior capsule opacification is an ongoing cellular redistribution
process. The level of viable cell coverage was therefore determined in
human donor capsular bags with implanted intraocular lenses, and
cellular morphology and ultrastructure were investigated in relation to
cell type and level of differentiation.
methods. Donor capsular bags, retrieved at intervals of 4 months to 13 years
after surgery, were investigated by phase optics before fixation.
Postfixation techniques included scanning electron microscopy and
transmission electron microscopy of sections and immunofluorescent
staining of cytoskeletal proteins in wholemounts.
results. All the capsular bags contained a large population of viable cells on
the capsular surfaces. Cells on the anterior face of the anterior
capsule and in the spaces around the intraocular lens had an elongated
morphology and expressed α-smooth muscle actin. The cells formed
light-scattering, multilayered aggregates and strands that were
surrounded by layers of extracellular matrix. The regions between the
intraocular lens and the equator of the bags were populated by
monolayers of epithelial cells of normal morphology and ultrastructure,
on both the anterior and posterior capsules. In some regions the apical
surfaces of the two epithelial monolayers were in contact, and in some
parts of the equatorial regions, differentiation of cells into
well-organized fiberlike cells was evident.
conclusions. Human capsular bags contain a large population of viable cells for many
years after cataract surgery. Cells in the regions around the
intraocular lens undergo transition to a mesenchymal type. Cells
peripheral to these regions can form a stable closed microenvironment
in which both normal epithelial morphology and differentiation to
fiberlike cells are maintained.
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